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As the name implies, the GED was designed as a high school equivalency test for non-graduates. According to the GED Testing Service, the GED originated after World War II to allow veterans to complete their high school education and attend college. Subsequently, civilians were allowed to take the GED test as well.
Throughout the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, the GED was taken primarily by individuals who were seeking to improve their credentials for work purposes. Since 1978, the GED test has been revised four times, the most recent of which was launched in January 2014. Today, the GED provides a second chance for those who have been unable to complete their studies in a traditional high school setting to demonstrate their mastery of high-school level coursework.